Greiss catches Islanders' goalie wave

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Greiss catches Islanders' goalie wave

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Thomas Greiss stopped 44 shots for his first shutout of the season, and the New York Islanders beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0 on Friday night.

Johnny Boychuk, Anthony Beauvillier and John Tavares scored for the Islanders, who moved past the Hurricanes into the second wild card spot in the Eastern Conference. Greiss got his eighth career shutout one night after Jaroslav Halak had 50 saves in a 3-0 home win against the crosstown-rival Rangers.

Cam Ward finished with 20 saves for the Hurricanes, who lost their second straight and fell into a tie with Columbus one point behind the Islanders for the conference's last playoff spot.

Jeff Skinner had his game-tying goal in the third period waved off after a replay review ruled he was offside when he entered the zone. Carolina failed to get a better scoring chance the rest of the night despite getting nearly twice as many shots as the Islanders (see full recap).

Wheeler, Scheifele help Jets rout Avalanche
WINNIPEG, Manitoba -- Blake Wheeler had two goals and assists and Mark Scheifele assisted on three goals as the Winnipeg Jets defeated the Colorado Avalanche 6-1 on Friday night.

Wheeler ended a 15-game goal drought and Scheifele now has seven points in his last three games.

Kyle Connor, Andrew Copp, Patrik Laine and Nikolaj Ehlers also scored for Winnipeg, which is 5-2-1 during its 10-game homestand. Dustin Byfuglien and Tyler Myers each had two assists and Laine added one.

Connor Hellebuyck made 30 saves to pick up his 30th win of the season. It was the most wins by a Jets goalie since the franchise moved to Winnipeg from Atlanta prior to the 2011-12 season. Ondrej Pavelec had 29 wins the first season.

Avalanche forward Mikko Rantanen nixed Hellebuyck's shutout bid when he scored unassisted on a wraparound with 5:56 left in the third period.

Colorado goalie Jonathan Bernier was pulled following the second period after Winnipeg went up 4-0 on 20 shots. Semyon Varlamov stopped six of the eight shots he faced in relief for the Avalanche (see full recap).

Bishop, Stars hold off Blues to make division move
DALLAS -- Ben Bishop stopped 27 shots and the Dallas Stars held on to beat St. Louis 2-1 on Friday night, moving past the Blues into third place in the Central Division.

Mattias Janmark and Stephen Johns scored for Dallas, which had a season-low 16 shots on goal while winning for the sixth time in seven games. The Stars, who had not been this high in the standings since Nov. 5, are tied with the Blues with 72 points, but have two games in hand.

Brayden Schenn spoiled Bishop's shutout bid with a power-play goal with 1:14 remaining, and Jake Allen finished with 14 saves for St. Louis. The Blues have lost three straight (0-2-1).

Neither team scored in the first period, when the Blues outshot Dallas 8-3. St. Louis failed to score on two power plays, and the Stars were unsuccessful on their only man-advantage of the period.

Janmark scored on the power play at 2:42 of the second, getting his 16th of the season to top his total from his rookie season two years ago. It was also his fourth on power-play goal of the season.

Bishop preserved the Stars' lead early in the third as he turned away Schenn's backhand attempt in front of the net (see full recap).

Claude Giroux has No. 28 junior hockey jersey retired by Gatineau Olympiques

Claude Giroux has No. 28 junior hockey jersey retired by Gatineau Olympiques

At 30 years old last season, Claude Giroux scored 102 points in the best league on the planet.

Imagine a young Giroux playing junior hockey? He was a terror.

Giroux eclipsed the 100-point barrier in each of his three seasons with the QMJHL's Gatineau Olympiques from 2005-08.

Here were his stat lines:

2005-06 — 103 points (30 goals, 64 assists) in 69 games

2006-07 — 112 points (48 goals, 64 assists) in 63 games

2007-08 — 106 points (38 goals, 68 assists) in 55 games (added 51 points in 19 playoff games)

Giroux, who will eventually have his No. 28 retired by the Flyers, had his jersey raised to the rafters Wednesday night by the Olympiques.

Same No. 28, just a different sweater (which is awesome, by the way).

Here are some images from the night, courtesy of the great Flyers senior director of public relations Zack Hill. The first picture is Giroux with his mother Nicole and father Raymond.

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Flyers vs. Penguins Stadium Series weather forecast is looking dicey

Flyers vs. Penguins Stadium Series weather forecast is looking dicey

Lincoln Financial Field prepared for snow Wednesday.

Next will be the rain, which is difficult to work around when it comes to outdoor hockey.

That could be the case Saturday when the Flyers host the Penguins in the 2019 Stadium Series at the Linc. Puck drop is set for 8 p.m. on NBC. The chance of rainfall is at 100 percent during the evening and the rain may not taper off until early Sunday morning, according to weather reports.

All of this is things we've experienced before. We're used to it. Because of that, we're very, very prepared for weather delays. ... We can't play in a torrential downpour, but right now if you look at the weather forecast — and it does change hour by hour — there's no call for severe or heavy rain. So we're really confident based on what we're reading right now that the game will go as planned.

- NHL chief content officer Steve Mayer

Weather conditions are always a factor in outdoor games. You're dealing with an uncovered ice surface and all possible types of Mother Nature.

"Rain in large quantities, that can hurt us," Dean Matsuzaki, the NHL's vice president of events, said Monday on the the AccuWeather podcast. "First and foremost, we have to worry about player safety, so rain, snow, things like that."

It becomes even more substantial when considering the implications of the game. The Flyers and Penguins are fighting for a playoff berth. The Flyers entered Wednesday six points out of the Eastern Conference's second wild-card spot, while the Penguins sat not-so-comfortably in third place of the Metropolitan Division (see standings).

"We actually joked about it after the last game [against the Pengins], I'm like, 'I don't know what's going to go on on the ice because it's going to be a battle out there,'" Travis Konecny said last Friday. "It's a big event for everyone to enjoy, but it might come down to one of the biggest games for us this year."

There has been no word of a potential postponement or time change for Saturday night's game. Both the Flyers and Penguins don't play again until Tuesday.

For the latest updates on the forecast, visit NBC Philadelphia right here, while checking out the sights and scenes ahead of the event below.

(AP Images)

(AP Images)

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